Christ on the Cross

Pieter Pietersz Aertsen (1540, Antwerp–1603, Amsterdam)Late 16th century – early 17th century

The Art Museum RIGA BOURSE

The Art Museum RIGA BOURSE
Riga, Latvia

The painting of mannerist style “Christ on the Cross” with its finely executed composition of many figures is like a novel that should be read carefully for a long time. The religious theme has been painted like a direct observation from life. Christ can be seen between two criminals. By the cross is the weeping Mary Magdalene, St. Veronica with Christ’s shroud, St. John and other figures. In the foreground Roman soldiers are throwing dice for Christ’s cloak. Nearby we see the tools used to crucify Christ and countless more different and interesting details with symbolic meaning. The gestures are important because they convey emotions and the mood. The contrasting colours create expression and drama.


  • Title: Christ on the Cross
  • Creator: Pieter Pietersz Aertsen (1540, Antwerp–1603, Amsterdam)
  • Creator Lifespan: 1540 - 1603
  • Creator Nationality: Dutch
  • Creator Gender: man
  • Creator Death Place: Amsterdam
  • Creator Birth Place: Antwerp
  • Date: Late 16th century – early 17th century
  • Location Created: Netherlands
  • Physical Dimensions: 71.7 x 90 cm
  • History: Acquired from the collection of Domenico de Robbiani (1866).
  • Type: Painting
  • Rights: Latvian National Museum of Art
  • Medium: Oil on wood

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